There is no denying that there are fewer canine characters in the cartoon and comic-strip world than there are animated cats. However, here are some of the most popular animated dogs that have made a substantial impact on cartoons in the last century. From the Walt Disney Studios to the offices of comic creators such as Charles Schultz, these characters have become irreplaceable parts of animation history.
Pluto: Though Mickey Mouse takes the cake as the most famous animated animal of all time, where would he be without his trusty friends and sidekicks? Pluto the pup is a charming golden dog with black ears, who is often pitted against the rough-and-tumble Bulldog named Butch. Unique from the other animal characters of Mickey’s crew, Pluto is the only animated dog who is actually a pet! Since 1930, in every episode of Mickey’s life, Pluto is trotting happily alongside him on his journey to stardom.
Goofy: Though Mickey Mouse’s best friend is more of an anthropomorphic dog than his pal Pluto, Goofy is still a canine-based character. No adventure with the mouse would be the same without this hilarious and clumsy feather-brain. The gangly character first joined Mickey in 1932, when he was called “Dippy Dog” before being reinvented as the “Goofy” we now know and love. Since the earlier years Goof has enjoyed his own success apart from his famous counterpart, as he starred in own series, as well as in movies like “A Goofy Halloween” and “A Goofy Movie” as well as “An Extremely Goofy Movie.”
Snoopy: Charles Schultz first created the Beagle dog named Snoopy as the non-speaking comedic relief for his comic strip Best friend and loyal companion to the star character Charlie Brown, Snoopy first was introduced to the world in October of 1950. His endearing feelings and snarky ideas were always conveyed in a thought bubble rather than openly expressed to the other characters. Though he can be forgetful and sulky, Snoopy’s loyalty and imaginative personality have won him the ranking of one the TV Guide’s the Top Ten Best Comic Characters of all time.
Scooby Doo: The producers at Hanna-Barbera began the Scooby-Doo series as a part of the Saturday morning cartoon line up in 1969. The titular character Scooby-Doo is talking Great Dane dog who helps his four teenage pals (along with his mini nephew Scrappy-Doo) to solve mysteries. The Scooby-Doo TV franchise has been featured on networks like ABC, CBS, WB and the Cartoon Network for decades, showing countless reruns of the phonetically-challenged pooch. Even starring in his own movie, Scooby-Doo has proven that kids and adults love watching the easily-spooked dog and his ghost-busting friends.
Blue’s Clues: Having pets has proven to benefit the developmental growth of young children, but because of Blue Clue’s, even watching dogs on TV can have a similar benefit! The educational show intended to help young children gain observational learning skills, first kicked off in 1996. Within a few years, Blue’s Clues became the top-rated show for preschoolers on the air, winning awards in children’s programming and educational material. The show is a 9-time Emmy nominee, and has been broadcasted in over 120 countries.
Other Animated/Comic Dogs
- Dogbert (From the comic strip Dilbert)
- Clifford The Big Red Dog
- Marmaduke (From the comic strip Marmaduke)
- Wallace and Gromit (From the Claymation animated series)
- Odie (Garfield the cat’s best friend)
- Spot (From the children’s book Where’s Spot)
- Astro (From The Jetsons)
- Brian Griffin